Reviewed Mar 17, 2012
Jessy Williams’s review:
Paranormal Activity 2 begins promisingly with the introduction of new characters; more than than in Paranormal Activity. This meaning more people to protect from the ghostly goings-on we know are going to transpire.
Cutting to the chase, the new family believe their house has been broken in to, so they install security cameras around their home. Now we know we’re going to be viewing the remainder of the film through these cameras, and also a very helpful hand-held that someone always seems to have, for some reason.
It is fair to say that Paranormal Activity 2 is rather slow at getting to the spooky bits. We witness a few bizarre moments involving a swimming pool and a saucepan, but we are still firmly sitting in our seats. We do, however, know Director Tod Williams has far more in store, and that’s why we eagerly carry on watching.
The success of Paranormal Activity 2 is thanks to its simplicity. With no jaw-dropping special effects and buckets of blood, we aren’t looking for a film about to win “Best Picture” at the Oscars. Audience’s flood to the cinema for the genuine frights they know they’ll get. Which is something missing in most horror films these days, with their unnecessary and scare-free re-makes. Humans are scared of the unknown and that’s why Paranormal Activity 2 triumphs. We never actually see what is haunting the family, and that terrifies us. Our imagination is allowed to run wild. This added to the drawn-out silences and careful editing is a recipe for a true horror film.
The clever link to Paranormal Activity is another reason this film deserves a thumbs up. Without giving anything away, the reappearance of Micah and Katie lures us in to wonder what is going to happen next.
There are a few laughable moments, including the sinisterly named baby, Hunter but, they are quickly forgotten when the family’s beloved Alsation is included in the hauntings.
The story may not be completely original, with the man of the house typically disbelieving anything paranormal is going on, but this just involves the audience, we and his daughter urge him, “look at the tape! Look at the tape!”
Overall, despite a slow beginning, Paranormal Activity 2 may not be as effective as the first (probably because we now expect the long silences to lead to a loud bang) it still delivers a handful of jumpy moments that will keep you entertained until the (again) shocking ending.